My friend Janie came to Norwich this week as she was playing accordion alongside a performance poet at the Arts Centre. The last time I saw performance poetry was in Stoke Newington in London about ten years ago. One of my classmates from university was involved in an event organised by my lovely teacher. It was absolutely awful and put me off performance poetry forever (so I thought). He forgot his lines early on, after proclaiming at the beginning that he didn't need to read from a sheet.
Anyway, we met Janie at the Arts Centre for lunch, and as we were parking the car I noticed a new, little organic cafe just across the road. I was so pleased because Janie likes healthy, organic food, and the cafe looked so sweet. So that's where we had lunch. I don't remember the name of the cafe, but it's on St Benedict Street in Norwich if anyone's interested.
In the evening we went to see the show. Janie played accordion to punctuate and support the poetry of Aoife Mannix. It worked really well, and Aoife's autobiographical stories were well-observed, mesmerising, compelling and funny in places, and she performed them well, using props and movement. I'm not sure, however, that it was poetry. The rhythm and pacing were good but I didn't pick up any other poetic elements. Maybe my ears just aren't attuned to hearing poetry though. I'd certainly recommend seeing them if you can. There are a few more shows upcoming.
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